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Lady Dogs' offensive woes continue
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ATHENS — South Carolina may have turned the ball over a bit more than No. 14 Georgia, but the Gamecocks were far more opportunistic.

Valerie Nainima scored 21 points and South Carolina (13-10, 6-5 Southeastern Conference) got 12 points off Georgia’s nine turnovers in a 52-42 win on Sunday.

Georgia (19-5, 6-5) failed to score a single point off South Carolina’s 10 turnovers.

“Valerie played extremely well,” said South Carolina coach Dawn Staley. “She was there when we needed her to hit the big shot.”

South Carolina led 30-18 at the break, and held its double-digit lead most of the second half.

Georgia closed the gap to 42-37 with 6:25 to play with a 6-0 run on layups by Jasmine James and Anne Marie Armstrong and a short jumper by Jasmine Hassell. But the Gamecocks answered with a 3-pointer by Nainima and a three-point play by Jewel May.

“You have to be able to get stops and score, which is not something we do a lot of,” said Georgia Coach Andy Landers. “We cut it to five, but we let the driver drive and kick it back out to their shooter for a three. Then we don’t score, and they come down and pound it inside.

“You have to be consistent and persistent on the defensive end, but any way you cut it, you have to score.”

Georgia shot 29 percent from the field, hitting 16 of 56 shots. The Lady Dogs made two of 11 3-point attempts.

Since starting the season 16-0, Georgia has been held to 53 or fewer points in five of eight games.

Freshman James scored 11 for Georgia, which played most of the game without two senior veterans. Center Angel Robinson hit her head on the knee of a South Carolina reserve while diving for a ball in the first half and left the game because of dizziness.

She did not return.

Point guard Ashley Houts drew her fourth foul five minutes into the second half and did not return. Landers chose to rest her sore ankle rather than return her to the game.

“We wanted to keep it close on the road,” said Staley. “We know how hard it is to get road wins in this league. I didn’t anticipate us getting out to a big lead and being able to hold on to get the win, but that’s what we did.”

Nainima went 3 for 11 from 3-point range for South Carolina.
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